Fifth Conference on Urban Environment


Tools for quantifying climate-related effects of trees on urban forest benefits

James R. Simpson, USDA, Davis, CA; and E. G. McPherson and S. E. Maco

The Center for Urban Forest Research works to demonstrate new ways that trees add value to communities, and to convert research results into financial terms via benefit-cost analysis to stimulate community investment in trees. Many of the benefits which trees provide are directly related to climate. These include energy conservation, air quality improvements, atmospheric carbon dioxide reductions and rainfall interception. Costs associated with trees are also accounted for, such as establishment, pruning, irrigation, litter cleanup, sidewalk and curb repair, and removal. In this paper we present two new computer simulation tools that have been developed to make this type of analysis more widely accessible, with the focus here on climate-related benefits. The first of these, dubbed ecoSmart, is a web-based program designed to illustrate and evaluate cost-effectiveness of residential landscape management practices as they relate to heating and cooling energy use savings (EnergyWise), runoff reduction and irrigation water use (WaterWise), and fire hazard (FireWise). The second, STRATUM (Street Tree Resource Analysis Tool for Urban Forest Managers), is a management tool utilizing either a sample or an existing inventory of street trees to evaluate current benefits, costs, and management needs from a neighborhood to city-wide scale.

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Poster Session 1, Urban Surface and Boundary Layer Climates
Wednesday, 25 August 2004, 5:00 PM-7:00 PM

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